Saturday, July 31, 2010

A look back at the World Cup 2010

By Anthony Vasquez

It’s been three weeks since the final between Spain and The Netherlands took place in Johannesburg last July 11. Now in brief a quick summary of the East Asian teams’ showing this time around folows.

North Korea and Australia, which is part of the Asian Football Confederation, did not get out of the first round. Australia lost to Germany 4-0, tied with Ghana 1-1, and defeated Serbia 2-1. North Korea did much worse losing its three games: 2-1 against Brazil, 7-0 against Portugal, and 3-0 against Ivory Coast. It gave up the most goals of any team in the tournament with a total of 12 goals.

South Korea and Japan made it to the Round of 16. In its last game of the competition, South Korea lost to Uruguay 2-1. In its match against Paraguay, Japan tied 0-0 after 120 minutes of play. Paraguay won the shootout from the penalty line that followed 5-3 and moved on to lose against Spain.

Both South Korea and Japan demonstrated that they are teams with the potential to move beyond the first round of the playoffs. In the 2002 Korea Japan tournament, South Korea did just that, making it as far as the semifinals. In the Third-place game against Turkey, South Korea lost 3-1.

Japan has not made it past the Round of 16. With some changes, the team may just do so next time.

Though no Chinese speaking nation was in this World Cup, there is a Chinese-English bilingual version of K Naan’s song “Wavin’ Flag.” Below is a video of it.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

New documentary on China's modernization

By Anthony Vasquez

This past Monday the BBC World Service broadcast the first of a four-part radio documentary series about China’s increasingly prominent role in world affairs. The series, called China: Shaking the World, features reporting by Michael Robinson.

Robinson calls China’s quest for global economic, political and social relevance “the story of the biggest attempted comeback in political history.”

In Part One, Robinson reports on China’s infrastructure boom, including the government’s ambitions of high-speed rail lines to Singapore and India. He also travels to Chongqing, where he interviews the manager of its port on the Yangtze and visits the site planned for a new high-tech complex that is to employ as many as 300,000 workers.

He talks to a couple whose home sits on land that will be incorporated into the complex. When asked whether or not they will miss their home, they say that they will, but are thankful for what their government has done for them.

The next part, scheduled to air on July 19, is to focus on the international tensions that China’s industrial revolution is creating.